Education: 100 percent of community college’s AHR grads certified

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Air conditioning, heating and refrigeration graduates at Rowan-Cabarrus Community College have had a 100 percent pass rate over the last 18 months on the North American Technician Excellence certification exam.
Certification is becoming a requirement of more HVAC/R contractors in the Charlotte region, according to Joe Christie, RCCC program head. Also, he said, companies and homeowners want technicians who are certified.
“We believe our students do well on the exam because our program gives them a sound and basic understanding of the industry and career field. Our students also gain knowledge and develop skills quicker than technicians who enter the field with no prior training,” Christie said.
RCCC’s AHR programs have a limited number of seats available in classes starting Aug. 18. Prospective students should call 704-216-3908, 704-216-3090 or 704-216-3912.
New scholarship
The late Daniel H. Elkins Jr. never attended Catawba College, but his two sons did, both graduating from the school.
Elkins, however, was an advocate for the college. According to son Gary Elkins of Winston-Salem (a 1975 graduate), his father believed Catawba embodied everything a college should be รณ a beautiful campus, gracious and friendly people and graduates who made fine employees.
Originally from Locust Grove, Ga., he worked for more than 40 years as an executive for McLean Trucking Co. He often visited Catawba to recruit for his company.
He died in 1998, and his widow, Annette Klements Elkins, lives in Winston-Salem.
Gary Elkins established the Daniel H. Elkins Jr. Memorial Scholarship, which will assist deserving students with financial need.
“My brother (Ken Elkins, class of 1979 of Temecula, Calif.) and I made a good choice and have pleasant memories of our time at Catawba. We had nothing but good experiences there. If it hadn’t been for my dad, we may have ended up somewhere else.”
Gary Elkins, who majored in business, is a member of Catawba’s Board of Visitors. He is employed by Amarr Co. of Winston-Salem, a manufacturer of garage doors. Trudy, his wife of 33 years, runs her own consulting business as a dietician for long-term care facilities. They have a daughter, Stacy Broughman of Bethune, S.C., a son, Brendan Elkins of Kernersville, and a grandson, Levi Broughman, 20 months.